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Indians claim terrorists took orders from Pakistan

Neeta, the sister of deceased bystander Harish Gohil, who was shot dead, mourns over the body of
her brother during his funeral

Dean Nelson

THE Indian authorities yesterday claimed to have proof that the Mumbai terrorists were receiving
instructions from Pakistan and discussing tactics with their handlers during the three days of
attacks in which they killed at least 195 people. The claims threaten further to embitter relations
between the two nuclear powers. Tensions have been high since confirmation that the only
captured gunman was a 21-year-old Pakistani.

It has also emerged that India had been warned that terrorists were planning an attack in
Mumbai. Up to 22 foreigners were among those killed in raids by 10-15 terrorists on sites across
the city, including hotels, the main railway station, a Jewish community centre and two hospitals.
The last of the gunmen was killed by Indian commandos yesterday morning, ending the siege at
the Taj Mahal Palace hotel. One hotel worker was found alive and 22 bodies were removed. As
many as 80 bodies may still be in the building.

One Briton has been confirmed dead and last night the Foreign Office refused to say whether
more UK citizens could be among the victims in the wreckage of the hotel.RR Patil, the deputy
chief minister of Mumbai’s state government, said there was “proof” that the terrorists were on
the phone to someone in Pakistan during the attack.

“All phone calls made by them were tapped. They were being instructed from outside regarding
their movement inside the hotel - whether to go upstairs or come down or make a move left or
right,” he said. Patil also claimed that the terrorists had intended to kill at least 5,000 people,
making for a greater atrocity than 9/11. The Pakistan government denied any involvement in the
attacks but backtracked on a decision to send the chief of its spy agency to India to help the
investigation. Asif Ali Zardari, Pakistan’s president, promised to take the “swiftest of action” if
there was evidence the terrorists came from his country. Yesterday the Indian authorities firmly
denied reports that up to seven of the attackers were British. Intelligence sources in the UK said
they were unaware of any evidence that British nationals were involved.

Police chiefs in Mumbai confirmed they had been aware as long ago as January that the Pakistan-
based militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba was planning a terrorist spectacular.

The information came from Fahim Ansari, a captured operative for the group, who revealed under
interrogation that he had carried out reconnaissance visits to the Taj and Oberoi hotels.

CCTV footage revealed that Ansari had visited the Oberoi. Both hotels said they had received
warnings as recently as August about an attack and had stepped up security.

The Indian authorities intercepted a telephone call made from the Arabian Sea less than two
weeks ago in which a terrorist suspect was heard saying “we’re coming to Mumbai”.

The Indian coastguard was alerted but Ajmal Aamer Kasav, the surviving gunman, is understood
to have told his interrogators the terrorists had switched ships to evade detection. Kasav, who
speaks fluent English, told investigators he and his fellow terrorists had trained at a camp at the
Mangla dam between Pakistani Punjab and Pakistan-held Kashmir.

The group had travelled in pairs to Karachi where they boarded a boat. They had been told not to
talk to each other on the journey.